Communication Tool Kit
Here are some communication tools to help you lobby your local Member of Parliament, and highlight to them the importance of tourism and the visitor economy to creating wealth and jobs, why their support is critical to tourism growth, and our priorities for action for their government.
Most Members of Parliament (MPs) have offices at both Parliament and at their electorate. You can write to them at either. They also have email.
Visit www.parliament.nz for a list of Members of Parliament and their contact details.
Use this map from the Elections New Zealand website if you need to find out which electorate you live in. Another way to find out which members of Parliament have an office near where you live is to look in your local telephone directory under ‘Members of Parliament’.
Protocol and forms of address
|Form of Address||Salutation||Conversation|
|Prime Minister||Rt Hon John Key, Prime Minister||Dear Prime Minister||Prime Minister|
|Ministers||Hon Jenny Blogs, Minister of ...||Dear Minister||Minister|
|Members of Parliament||Hon Jenny Blogs MP, or Mr Jenny Blogs MP||Dear Mr/Ms/Dr Blogs||Mr/Ms/Dr Blogs|
- Write to your local MP, introducing your organisation and highlighting the importance of tourism and the visitor economy to your community
- Schedule an appointment with your MP at their regular constituency clinic
- Invite them to visit your operation to experience a tourism business first-hand
- Invite your MP to events, new product launches, trade shows, workshops, presentations
- Offer to be a resource/sounding board/conduit to sources of information for your local MP on tourism-related issues
Tips on writing to your MP
Your MP probably gets hundreds of emails and letters so keep it short and to the point. Attach the Tourism Fact sheet to support your key messages about the importance of tourism to your community and New Zealand.
- Personalise your letter so that it demonstrates your passion for the industry
- Keep it to one page, MPs are busy people
- Keep to the point - don’t try and cover too many issues
- Summarise your key message in the opening paragraph
- Cover the key points, including the facts, e.g. value of tourism to New Zealand, foreign exchange earnings, domestic tourism, jobs and the other benefits, such as creating vibrancy in communities and instilling a sense of pride, being a catalyst for new infrastructure such as stadia and waterfront development, encouraging sustainability initiatives such as recycling
- Be courteous – the aim is to influence them and hopefully build a relationship
- Include your name and contact details
- Do run a spell and grammar check over the final letter
- Invite them to contact you for more information or to discuss further
MPs are available to meet with people at their Electorate Office in sessions known as a constituency ‘clinic’. The clinic sessions are usually on Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays, as the House of Representatives (Parliament) tends to sit on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Some MPs also hold constituency clinics outside their main centre.
Call, write or email to the electorate office and the member’s electorate secretary will arrange an appointment.
- Make an appointment to discuss the importance of tourism to your community
- Ask some of your staff to attend the meeting with you, or go with a couple of other tourism operators
- Download some possible talking points, based on the priorities from The Tourism Future Statement 2011-14: The Visitor Economy Creating Wealth
- Bring a letter to leave behind that highlights why the tourism industry is so important to New Zealand and your community.
- In addition to the personal letter, leave behind a copy of The Power of the Visitor Economy and the latest Key Tourism Statistics.
- Follow up the meeting with a thank you email and offer to be a resource to him or her on tourism-related issues. Send them useful information, trends, links, reports as well as news articles or events that highlight why tourism is so important for your community/region/New Zealand.